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Fast out of the blocks

A piece on Arsenal’s fast paced starts to games this season.

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A piece on Arsenal’s fast paced starts to games this season

The Gunners, this season, have been notorious for coming out of the blocks at a serious pace, hitting teams fast and early, setting a high tempo of play from the get go. Take a look at the stats for the first half of games this season; Arsenal sit joint first scoring 16 goals, only conceding 4. Whilst our London rivals, and Sunday’s opposition, sit 12th on that table, only managing 10 goals, furthermore, conceding 13.

Spurs have struggled in first half of games this season, looking sluggish and off the pace. In contrast the Gunners have been exuberant in the first half of their games, lighting up teams with their fast ball movement and lethal counter attacks, allowing them to punish many teams early on.

A couple of weeks back, when we faced Brighton in a hard fought contest, the gunners bagged two goals in the first half to lay the foundations to go on and win 4-2, in a vital game for the tile race.  Back in August, Martin Odegaard finished twice inside the fist 11 minutes, killing the Cherries spirits and chance of a result. 

So the evidence is there in plain sight for all to see. Arsenal’s relentless pressure and intent-full starts to games is proving too much for most to handle. If Arsenal can implement the same intent and ferocious start against Spurs on Sunday then the game could well sway in our favour. The Gunners would be hopeful that early goals will rattle Spurs and deliver us one of the most valuable 3 points up for grabs this season. With Spurs evidently starting games slow this year, tardiness costing them points for the last several weeks, we hope that Arsenal can capitalise and bring the game to Spurs from the get-go.

On the other hand, there is one worry that does spring to the mind of Arsenal fans. If we fail to start the game on the front foot and it is in the balance coming into the last half hour of the the London Derby, could Spurs punish us? Spurs have shown that they do come alive late in games with 20 of their 37 goals coming after the 60 minute mark this season. They have pulled off extremely strong finishes and have come from being behind or level on numerous occasions to steal the 3 points.

Although Arsenal haven’t managed a win away to Spurs in the Premier League since 2014, this visit to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium could be one that ends that dull and unsuccessful string of losses. The Gunners faithful are in strong belief that this could be our chance to upset our local foe on their home turf and gain a vital 3 points in our charge for the title.

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